A local TD has blasted Housing Minister Eoghan Murphy, saying he is not capable of solving the homeless crisis.
Dublin South West TD, Seán Crowe, also said children and families are suffering because of the Minister’s inability and inaction.
The local Sinn Fein TD was commenting on the latest figures from the Department of Housing that revealed there are over 10,000 people in Ireland homeless for the past six months in a row.
July figures were up for the first time in recent months, with a total of 10,275 people in emergency accommodation in Ireland; 6,497 adults and 3,778 children.
There was also an increase in the number of families, with 1,721 recorded in July up 35 on the previous month.
In a statement that accompanied the figures, Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy said:
“We continue to do everything we can to get people out of homelessness but the increase in July, shows that this remains a huge challenge,”
“There are fewer families and children in emergency accommodation today than this time last year,” he said.
Deputy Crowe, however says that the disturbing homeless figures are evidence the Housing Minister is not able for the job.
“We know that once again the number of children in emergency accommodation across the state has risen since the last set of figures were released,” Deputy Crowe said.
“1,265 families in Dublin, representing almost 2,800 children, are currently trapped in homelessness and it’s innocent children and their families who are suffering because of his inaction and inability to tackle the crisis.
“But there is no sense of urgency and no new approach coming from the Minister and his government.
“Minister Murphy and his government are clearly not up to the task of solving the housing and homelessness crisis.
“Their devotion to the private market is short-sighted and only leading to a greater problem, with spiralling rents and a subsequent lower standard of living for families across the state.
“Their rebuilding Ireland plan is not delivering.
“We need a different approach that will deliver more housing, deal with the chronic shortage of affordable and social housing, create security of tenure, and prioritise and end the housing and homeless crisis.”
Crowe said the government’s treatment of children must also be looked at.
“The government, we are informed, are ‘disappointed’ in the levels of homeless and the latest direct provision figures, but that will be cold comfort to these children and their families.
“Children are suffering, and the government are doing absolutely nothing to dispel the lack of hope and the sense of hopelessness for those caught up in homelessness or so-called temporary accommodation.”
A spokesperson for Minister Eoghan Murphy responded to Dublin Gazette regarding Sean Crowe’s comments: “Deputy Crowe and his party have no plan to fix the crisis in our housing sector.
“If they did they would bring it before the Dail and get support for it – we are in a minority Government so they can do this.
“The Government has a plan and it is working.
“Over 2,000 new homes will begin construction every month this year.
“That is huge progress.
“Alongside this 10,000 social homes will be added to the social stock.
“Deputy Crowe is clearly not familiar with what is actually happening in housing and is resorting to soundbites.
“If he has a policy he should bring if forward and get support for it in the Dail.
“Nothing in his comments help deliver for families that need our help.
“What helps these families is a sustainable increase in new homes and continued investment across the country.”